Marina Tsvetaeva was born in Moscow and published her first collection of poems at the age of 18. She is considered to be one of the most renowned poets of 20th-century Russia.
The times of the Russian Revolution were troublesome for Tsvetaevaand her family. Her husband Efron volunteered for the front in 1914 and after the revolution joined the White Army. Tsvetaeva was trapped in Moscow and thrown into extreme poverty for five years. She even sent one of her daughters to a state orphanage hoping for better conditions for her, but her daughter starved to death. After this tragedy she decided to emigrate to Berlin where she published the poem The Tsar Maiden and the collections Poems to Blok and Separation. The family finally settled in Paris in 1925.
In 1937 her husband and daughter returned to Russia, Marina and her son followed two years later in 1939. Her poetry was not well received by the Bolshevik regime and she found no work to do aside from a few translations. In 1941 her husband was shot as a spy and her daughter sent to a labour camp. In the same year, with the evacuation of Moscow, Tsvetaeva was sent to Yelabuga (while most poets were sent to Chistopol) where she found herself once more desperately looking for work. She committed suicide on August 31, 1941.